I’ve never cared much for candy, so Easter was all about the dress. My mother, who had been a child of the 40s and 50s believed Easter meant pastel dresses and tights with gloves and lacy hats that looked a little like eggshells covered in lace. I also was entitled to the purchase of one mock-patent leather plastic “purse.”
Each dress is carefully documented in front of some seasonal neighborhood scene—the neighbors’ azaleas or Mrs. Callahan’s tulips. The year my brother turned fifteen we got no further than the driveway before he decided he’d done his part of Easter festivities. My white hat, gloves and tiered dress match my mother’s Honda Accord. My brother’s scowl matches the slate gray sky.
But my favorite image is from years before, when I’m still a baby and my brother is a little kid, too. My plastic purse is slung over the handles of my big wheel and the crotch of my lacy tights is drooping past my knees. Chris’ hair is cut short, styled into a spike he was too young to feel self-concious in, and our giant tom cat, George is lurking behind us both. I don’t remember actually being there, but I think the purse-big wheel placement says a lot about two-year-old me and those first Easters.